Hungary WW2 Arrow Cross Supporter’s Badge. 2.7cm diamter.
The Arrow Cross Party (Hungarian: Nyilaskeresztes Párt – Hungarista Mozgalom, literally “Arrow Cross Party-Hungarist Movement”) was a national socialist party led by Ferenc Szálasi, which led in Hungary a government known as the Government of National Unity from 15 October 1944 to 28 March 1945. During its short rule, ten to fifteen thousand people (many of whom were Jews) were murdered outright, and 80,000 people were deported from Hungary to their deaths in the Auschwitz concentration camp. After the war, Szálasi and other Arrow Cross leaders were tried as war criminals by Soviet courts. The party was founded by Ferenc Szálasi in 1935 as the Party of National Will. It had its origins in the political philosophy of pro-German extremists such as Gyula Gömbös, who famously coined the term “national socialism” in the 1920s. The party was outlawed in 1937 but was reconstituted in 1939 as the Arrow Cross Party, and was said to be modeled on the Nazi Party of Germany. The iconography of the party was clearly inspired by that of the Nazis; the Arrow Cross emblem was an ancient symbol of the Magyar tribes who settled Hungary, thereby suggesting the racial purity of the Hungarians in much the same way that the Nazi swastika was intended to allude to the racial purity of the Aryans. The party’s ideology was similar to that of Nazis. The Arrow Cross Party conceived Jews in racial as well as religious terms, although the necessary scientific capital for a widespread and elaborate program of eugenics simply did not exist in Hungary at the time. The Arrow Cross Party was pro-Catholic and its anti-Semitism had its origins in Christian belief.